A new larger travel tripod for my Lumix GX8 camera

| February 2, 2017

The larger "old" tripod that I’ve owned for 40 years and a small pocket tripod that I gave to my son is now unacceptable for my new camera (my bias opinion) …  so it is time to update with something I don’t mind hauling around. I would have liked a $300+ carbon fiber ultra-light, but that […]

Glad to see them travel, but good to know they are home safe too

| December 13, 2016

Katelyn and Drew are back home in Minnesota after a great time in Europe. Drew’s lung cancer presentation went well in Vienna and they enjoyed the extra couple of days traveling by train and transit back to Paris before flying home. We are looking forward to a few more photos but they sent enough photos […]

Frohe Weihnachten 2016 from Katelyn and Drew

| December 8, 2016

Tis the season to be starting to think about a “Jolly Christmas” as Katelyn and Drew sent back a couple photos from Vienna, Austria this week …  and from the looks of it, they are enjoying themselves. I sure hope little “Baby Oostra” likes long flights? It just so happened that Dr. Drew was invited […]

A sense of accomplishment after the climb

| November 30, 2016

For those who backpack or have planned challenging hiking trips, few offer the impressive views and strenuous  climbs that the trails along the Na Pali Coast of Kauai, Hawaii. My son Taylor has sent back and posted a couple photo from his trip this week. Amazing trip.

My kids taking a walk on the same day in two different places

| November 28, 2016

  Chuckling at the difference between how relaxed Taylor’s “walk” on Kauai looks (while on his backpacking trip to Hawaii) compared to the walk Katelyn and Drew took this weekend in Wayzata, MN (our September trip). Taylor’s message to me after a few days “offline” — “We made it!”    

Archiving a sailing route planning site — fastseas.com

| November 24, 2016

On the recommendation of Carolyn Goodlander (wife of Fatty Goodlander), I’m giving the FastSeas.com weather routing and passage planning online tool a try. Not that I’m planning a bluewater passage to Bermuda just yet, but it is interesting how technology has changed route planning. Where it seems to help is in tweaking departure dates and […]

Shortened work week … or none at all for Taylor in Hawaii

| November 22, 2016

I couldn’t resist sharing one of my son’s photos from his Thanksgiving trip to Hawaii. The first few days have been spent at a friends house on Oahu not to far from Marine Corps Base Hawaii on Kaneohe Bay, but they are not sitting still. Each day after the morning rain, at least the two […]

Tinkering with a new Lenovo Windows 10 notebook computer

| November 19, 2016

I just couldn’t pass up burning my $280 Best Buy credit on a new mid-level Windows  10 Lenovo Yoga notebook computer. It is going to take some time tweaking it before I’m comfortable with it, but I decided that a new MacBook Pro was not in the cards for me (too expensive and missing so […]

Single guys in Hawaii. What could go wrong?

| November 18, 2016

My son Taylor and his buddy Cam heading off this Friday morning on a trip to Hawaii. They have been planning a backpacking trip after locking up permits to hike the Kalalau Trail on the Na Pali Coast on Kauai since spring. One of their college friends works and lives in Honolulu so they have […]

How much room do you leave between vehicles?

| September 25, 2016

A photo is worth a 1000 words — and this photo is a chilling reminder for those of us who travel regularly on the interstates. I purposely allow for more buffer than many when following a line of traffic (a car length for every 10 mph) AND in particular give semi-trucks even more breathing room. […]

Spoiled with better coffee after our trip to visit Katelyn and Drew

| September 22, 2016

First off, I am not a snob when it comes to coffee. I have my likes (and quirks) when it comes to coffee, but drink all coffees … even the cheapest boiled campfire coffee will do. That noted … I do enjoy a few of the specialty roasts like the Jamaica Blue Mountain and Kona […]

Trip to visit Katelyn and Drew in Wayzata, MN — Part 3

| September 16, 2016

Continued from 9/14/2016 and 9/15/2016 — This is PART 3:   Instead of heading home, we picked up pizza and headed over to my nephew Justin and his wife Keity’s new house (photo above) about 25 minutes from Wayzata. He and his son Evan gave us the grand tour while we waited for his wife […]

Trip to visit Katelyn and Drew in Wayzata, MN — Part 2

| September 15, 2016

Continued from 9/14/2016 — This is PART 2: Sunday was fully planned as well. Katelyn and Drew had scoped out a car show in previous years and they knew it would be something I would enjoy. So before going to a ballgame, “we” (well at least “I”) enjoyed the old cars — and shared a […]

A very enjoyable trip to visit Katelyn and Drew in Wayzata, MN

| September 14, 2016

Tempus fugit (Latin phrase) for "Time flies" when you’re having fun!  … and we certainly had a good time this past weekend with our pregnant daughter Katelyn and husband Drew. This trip to Minneapolis was the first since Thanksgiving 2015 — shame on us — but at least we waited for great weather to visit. […]

A beautiful quadrotor aerial video from Lake Michigan

| September 1, 2016

My son-in-law Drew shared a really impressive Phatom3 movie clip on YouTube after his July 2016 vacation in Michigan. There were some incredibly beautiful views, sunsets and shoreline video … of course it didn’t hurt that the weather was perfect for Katelyn and Drew’s vacation at his parent’s “cabin” (as they call it). Although I’ve […]

Our 2010 BMW X5 35d clicked odometer to 150,000 miles

| August 27, 2016

On my drive home this week, our 2010 BMW X5 35d modified diesel rolled the odometer passed 150K (I know, they don’t roll like my old Mercedes anymore). Economy is not quite up to the 30 mpg highway that I have been hoping for, but I’m not complaining about 28 mpg "with an impressive power" […]

Digital photography: Shooting in RAW, TIFF or JPG?

| August 20, 2016

An aside … I spent my formative years engrossed in photography, back before it was digital and when "souping" film in a darkroom. Nowadays 90% of what I take is on a smartphone due to the simplicity and recent improvements in quality. Still, the best photographic images come from a quality lens and large sensor […]

My eyes are open for an Approved Packard Service sign

| August 17, 2016

A friend of mine, an automotive journalist, snapped this photo on his way across the country on Route 66 last week and I couldn’t help but crop and copy it for my blog – (above – thanks Wayne, not that you know I’m using your photo).  Although my garage shop is not quite ready for […]

Beautiful filler photo for quadrotor enthusiasts

| July 31, 2016

While Katelyn and Drew were vacationing in Michigan, they included this very cool photo! It is a perfect filler for a missing Sunday afternoon blog post.

And you thought Airstream trailers had a classic style?

| July 14, 2016

For Volkswagen fanatics who like travel and camping, there aren’t many better ways to show  your VW love than a Dub-Box Trailer. These lightweight trailers are unique and beckon back to day when the roads were open and free … so as long as you have a few bucks for gas and were not in a […]

Neil Zurcher packs his bags for a final farewell tour

| June 16, 2016

It looks like a farewell “again” for Neil Zurcher from WLW in Cleveland. I remember ‘One Tank Trip’ from our 13 years in the Cleveland area as we often looked for things to do when our time off was short (well it still is!) His trips were a highlight of things to do when our […]

A coastal Hawaii hike for the bucket-list

| May 6, 2016

The Kalalau Trail hike along the Na Pali Coast on the northern most Hawaiian island of Kauai is a hike to add to the bucket list. Having seen the beauty “mostly” from the air for the short couple of days we were there, I see this  as a  must return island. Just reading about the […]

Replacing parts on Encore and a couple spring break photos

| April 3, 2016

While out sailing with the family on Encore over Easter week, we suffered a halyard block failure — see photo in previous post. There wasn’t a direct replacement in my spare parts bin (shame on me), but Drew and I zipped over to Marine Connection  and found an acceptable "used" halyard block. The replacement is […]

Side by side — My unscientific Lyft vs UBER comparison

| March 17, 2016

After using both Lyft and UBER quite a few times over the past year, it has been difficult to say one is much better than the other … they are pretty similar. From the consumers perspective, it is far better to have the competition as it spurs innovation, competitive pricing and better service. We riders […]

Escaping for a minute while writing lunchtime Python scripts

| February 25, 2016

The American Pi blog was due for an update (including on MyDesultoryBlog.com too!) and thought escaping for a minute to gaze into water and sky of the right color for this dreary February afternoon was a good idea. Why am I still in Cincinnati again?

MedAire Travel Risk Map for 2016

| February 11, 2016

(lower resolution JPG image above – download full resolution PDF from MedAire) MedAire launched its Travel Risk Map 2016 PDF, an interactive map that highlights medical and security risks across the globe. The online map rates regional security as ‘extreme’, ‘high’, ‘medium’, ‘low’ or ‘insignificant’, and medical risks as ‘low’, ‘medium’, ‘high’, ‘very high’ or ‘rapidly […]

Love this Slick TRIP Kickstarter backpack project

| February 7, 2016

I’d be jumping onboard for this Slick Kickstarter Backpack project if the $249 for the TRIP version didn’t frighten me away. Sure looks like the perfect traveling companion for my many trips — both for weekly work trips and those trips to the boat. It looks like they intend to keep the quality high … […]

First nasty winter drive of 2016 was not too bad

| January 14, 2016

This weeks trip back and forth from SW Ohio to NE Ohio was the first with slippery road and winter snow in 2016. There are sure to be a few more winter days this year, but glad to already be into mid-January. This drive was also the first winter driving for the BMW X5 35d. […]

Take an Insprational Trip to Israel this spring–Mar/Apr 2016

| January 11, 2016

Have you ever considering visiting Israel? Here’s a great opportunity to go with my friend Pastor Keith Thomas for a “Best of Israel” tour. He has been taking groups for years and combined with his handpicked guides and economical  group rate accommodations and airfare, a trip this spring may be your best opportunity. Touring Israel […]

What a view! Happy Birthday to my son-in-law Drew

| December 13, 2015

Looking at this sunrise photo at the Grand Canyon on a small screen does not do it justice, so click so it’s full-size; that’s a great photo from Drew’s new Nexus 6 smartphone. Perhaps its not just the amazing view or stunning sunrise photo … but the fact that my “crazy daughter” (as Drew titled his email) […]

Great to see my kids enjoying their 20s …

| December 10, 2015

20s?? Well for Drew (photo) … for only a few more days! Katelyn and Drew are in Arizona celebrating Drew’s 30th birthday with his family this week and they sent me a  couple photos from the desert and in a hot air balloon flight — beautiful!  It is great to see all three kids (Taylor […]

From my personal perspective, the TSA did their job well

| November 21, 2015

What a duffus! I don’t want to admit, but I made a MAJOR airport security mistake on Friday morning … and am thankfully a free man to tell the tale. KUDOS to the much maligned Transportation Security Administration (TSA) for doing their job and doing it well. Neglectful Rich left an extended round full 9mm […]

Finding photos that stir good memories #TBT

| October 29, 2015

An old friend Charlie Matthews (Kamikaze) and I are closing in on a memorable December 1977 road trip we took together in his Volkswagen bug. We had a great time (minus the medical incident) and started a yearly trip for me with buddies that repeated for years. I ran across a couple more when my […]

TechFriday: What does it take to steal credit and debit cards?

| August 28, 2015

Most technology followers know the theory behind copying the swipe code from traditional magnetic credit cards, but few people swiping their cards at the gas pump realize that the “skimming device” is installed by criminals is installed out of site “inside” the gas pump. Q: If you can’t see it, how do you know your […]

Air travel on the cheap. First flight on Frontier Airlines.

| July 11, 2015

It was a quick and inexpensive flight to Florida this past week to do a little tropical weather prep aboard Encore. Summer is the time of year that “commuter cruisers” double their line, remove sails and store an extra windage in case hurricane winds target the area … besides I really was looking forward to […]

Buy airline tickets 47 days in advance & on Tuesday afternoon

| June 17, 2015

Now I’ll be the first to admit, I spend too much time agonizing over purchasing things wondering if I’m buying the right model or brand … and am I paying too much. The Internet has only complicated matters since there is even more information to process. It’s the same thing when booking travel … although […]

Poor flight management by #Delta Airlines at Reagan National

| June 14, 2015

Somebody has had a lousy day of traveling … or is it two days? After 9 days in London, Taylor was up at 6AM UK time on Sunday to get to the airport for his flight back home. Because he had re-booked his ticket from CVG instead of leaving from Williston, ND, he ended up […]

Norwegian Dawn gets hung up on a Bermuda reef

| May 20, 2015

I'm remembering the tight entries and snake like departures from Bermuda a few years ago … it was just a matter of time. In this photo provided by the Royal Gazette, the Norwegian cruise ship Norwegian Dawn, lies aground near Bermuda's North Channel Tuesday, May 19, 2015. The Norwegian cruise ship Norwegian Dawn, lies aground […]

The Treasure Coast was a popular place this weekend

| March 30, 2015

After the rain on Friday (above), the weather improve for a weekend finishing up a long drawn out engine work (plus a few other repairs) to Encore at the marina in Florida. The weather improved and was high 70s on Saturday and Sunday but with the north wind felt cooler in the shade. I wasn't […]

The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry

| March 22, 2015

Last year about this time I had mentally decided that Brenda and I would be cruising the Bahamas aboard our sailboaat Encore in March 2015, but as “life happens” those dreams were not meant to be. As the year progressed, both of our surviving parents had health concerns requiring more of our attention, Encore started […]

Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.